I have before and after photos I’m really proud of, but we’re not going to focus on those today. I think it’s amazing that people show their before and after photos — and they should be proud of them! When you work hard at something, you want to recognize those results. But instead, I want to focus on how FASTer Way To Fat Loss has made me feel.
I’ve found a new way of approaching eating, and I feel so much better now. I’ve learned to focus on the nutrients that I’m taking into my body, and how those work to fuel me and to burn fat…how good fats are good for you and don’t create fat in the body, and how I actually needed even more protein than I thought throughout the day. I feel like I have a new lease on life, on how I feel in my body and how I approach eating in general.
Do I think I look better now, too? Yes. I’m so proud of how my abs look — and how strong they feel. I thought I had totally lost them after having a kiddo, but it turns out I was just feeling bloated due to what and when I was eating.
Are they perfect six-pack abs? NO. Are they strong-looking abs for my body? YES. Do I still default to seeing what’s wrong with my body? YES. Am I getting better about loving my body? YES. All of these things, all of this together, it’s all where I am right now. I found this program after Scotti tried and shared her experience on the blog last year, and that same approach has helped me so much. I hope that sharing some of my experiences with this program will help someone else, too!
#FWTFL, The Details
So, now, let’s get on with the lowdown about #FWTFL and what I thought. Like others of you here, I read Scotti’s post and was inspired that she wanted to model healthy eating and a positive body image for her kiddos. That’s what I wanted, too! I wanted to feel healthier and show healthy food and movement habits to Sienna, my six-year-old daughter. I was also intrigued by the hormone-balancing effects of the fasting and wanted to try it out for myself. So I decided to hop on the next round of FasterWay To Fat Loss (the name implies their focus, but I feel like it’s a bit misleading as to how intelligent the program really is, so I’ll keep referring to it here as #FWTFL). I was honestly excited to get things going in a new direction after the holidays, but didn’t know quite what to expect.
How #FWTFL Works
It turns out my coach Cathy (who worked with Scotti, too) is insanely helpful and walks you through every step of the 6-week program with fabulous ideas and advice for switching up your eating and workout habits. You start slowly by implementing intermittent fasting and evaluating how you feel by fasting for at least 12 hours overnight. (The goal is to fast for 16 hours, but I was glad to learn that some women need not go more than 12 or 14 hours; I feel best sticking to 14).
You then move on to tracking your food through a great app called ‘My Fitness Pal’. The nice thing is, that loads of people already use the app, so most of your foods already exist there! Easy-peasy tracking. Cathy helps you set up the app with your information and teaches you all about macronutrients and what you need to fuel your body. I thought I was a protein-fiend before this, but now I realize I need even more protein every day to burn fat and feel good! There are 2 low-carb days each week where you reduce carbs but add in extra good fats to keep you from being hungry, and keep your body and brain fueled.
In addition to learning about macronutrients, you also get access to workout videos for each day of the week. I did some of the workouts and was happy to have them to try out. They’re also mostly under 30 minutes, which is so doable for us busy, badass women who have so much on our plates. Since I already love barre3 so much, I was happy to be able to continue that workout throughout the program and occasionally added some of the HIIT workouts on the low-carb days to take full advantage of fat burning.
What I love about this program is that it’s essentially that — a workshop or session on learning about fasting and macronutrients. There were no bars or powders or gimmicks to buy, only Cathy’s time and expertise, plus access to the meal plans and the workouts for six weeks. The recommended meal tracking app is free, and the meal plans give you great ideas, but you can also easily implement your own (or some of Cathy’s great recipes).
What I Love About #FWTFL
- The sustainability of the intermittent fasting and way of eating.
- The access to a knowledgeable coach who is kind, and gives great food ideas and suggestions.
- That I stopped feeling bloated almost immediately! You avoid gluten and dairy if possible through the program, and I felt so much better.
- Thinking about fueling your body instead of focusing on exactly what you can’t have everyday.
- That it’s a plan for healthy living and eating, not a fad diet or gimmick.
- That I can still do the workouts I love instead of having to do theirs if I don’t want to.
- That it embraces imperfection…go out to eat and indulge? Just start over the next day, no biggie!
- The snacks and meals I’ve discovered!
#FWTFL: Some Of My Go-To Foods
If you’ve followed me here or on Instagram at all, you’ll know I’m a foodie at heart…I LOVE FOOD. Not only have I discovered some great nutrient-dense food combos I love through #FWTFL, but I also love that when I do go out to eat I can just not worry about it.
Kat was in town visiting for work last night, and we were able to go out to a phenomenal meal together and you better believe I had the Korean fried chicken, the BBQ fried rice and the insanely good curry with burnt ends (yes, I’m talking about you Eem…drool.) I enjoyed myself. I watched my macros earlier in the day so I could leave room for eating out that night, but mostly I just didn’t worry about it.
I know I’ll focus on yummy healthy meals for the majority of this week, and I’ve still seen great results and have felt great with this approach since I started. I didn’t get through any of the weeks perfectly at all, but I focused on changing my mindset about food and that has really worked. It dawned on me that although eating whatever I wanted whenever I wanted for the last year or so seemed fun, I just didn’t feel good. Making some changes that are manageable and healthy and smart has renewed my love of healthy foods, but also allowed me to enjoy the amazing dishes all around Portland that I love.
Salads: I am not typically a salad girl, but it is a great way to use leftovers, make something quickly, and get good fiber and nutrients in. My tips for salads: add lots of ingredients, use Everything But The Bagel Seasoning (a favorite of mine from Trader Joe’s), put leftovers on top to make them actually filling, add nuts and seeds, use baby spinach instead of weird lettuce greens you don’t like, use deli meat on top if you don’t have any leftover proteins, use pesto or romesco sauce instead of dressing, use oil & fav vinegar for quick healthy dressing instead of sugary, boring store-bought stuff — homemade dijon vinaigrette always gets me excited for a salad!
Snacks: When I used to eat a paleo diet, omg, I thought I would turn into an almond. I don’t love almonds unless they’re smoked or have some fancy salt on them. But what I do love that is a bit better for you….Roasted hazelnuts. OMG. They’re so good, and I get unsalted roasted and YUM. So, find your favorite nut and snack on that. Now, those Skinny Dipped almonds tho, I CAN. Yes, I can. Those things are GOOD because chocolate. Other favorite snacks include peanut butter fat bombs (taste like rich yet not-too-sweet PB cups), soft boiled eggs with taco seasoning (trust, they’re so good), thin rice cakes with PB & blueberries, bananas with honey and cinnamon on top (can put these on rice cakes, too), Trader Joe’s GF Crispbread OMG, and beef jerky on low-carb days. *Currently taking a break to eat a snack now*
Meals: For most meals, I focus on healthy proteins, veggies and including GF nutrient-dense carbs…sweet potatoes, quinoa, oats, brown rice. A few times I used a brown rice or lentil pasta for myself as a base for our dinner if I was cooking traditional pasta or white rice for my family. If they were having bread or toast with the meal, I’d grab one of the Crispbreads for myself. I think learning what you like to swap out for things you’re avoiding is huge for success — at least for me!
#FWTFL Works For My Needs
This new mindset around food worked SO well for me, and I just wanted to share it. Also, Cathy, the coach Scotti and I both used, is SO nice, helpful and supportive. Sometimes it takes an organized program to catalyze that reset…a different perspective or a little something to mix things up. None of my jeans were fitting anymore, my stomach was feeling just icky all the time, I was working out and strong — but felt like I had hit a plateau because I wasn’t paying attention to what was going into my body. So this helped. A ton. I’m so glad I have this new relationship with food that still leaves room for who I am.
You can follow this link to sign up for Cathy’s next session that starts on March 16th, and you can find her on Instagram here for any questions you may have. I can’t recommend it enough if you’ve been feeling like you are in the same boat as I was or need a new approach to tracking your food and making healthy habits. Just announced, there is a sale for new clients! Get $50 off this current round (through March 18th) or the April round (through March 24th) with code STAYWELL!
Hey, friends. Hop on over to follow me on Instagram @laurajansenstyle to see more of what I’m up to in Portland, Oregon. If you want to shop my current pieces I’m loving and wearing, head over to My Closet!
Full disclosure y’all, the session link above is an affiliate link where I get a small commission if anyone joins. But all thoughts and opinions of this program are totally my own, and I planned this review before knowing the link was an option. Thank you for your support on our blog so we can provide an income for ourselves as we continue to offer additional posts on products & services we truly like. Y’all saw my Madewell post. I try to tell it like it is!
I did FWTFL after Scotti posted about it – I loved it so much!! Cathy was amazing! I felt so strong and empowered by the program..still so grateful that y’all recommended it! I plan to do another round after baby 🙂
Ah so glad to hear you liked it, too, Katie! Thanks so much for taking time to post a comment. I really had such a great experience with it!
So is it something you continue to do or does it just last for a six week cycle?
I just did the first six weeks. They offer a continued program after that if you want, but it’s not required! And I’ve known a couple of people who did another round months later to just get back into it more, have accountability again, etc.
I’ve recently lost a bunch of weight – different strategy but I could really relate to eating food that makes you feel good vs what I think I want but makes me feel like crap. I’m buying a lot of clothes in new sizes now, which is what led me to y’all! Thanks for all your posts!
Feeling good from what you eat is such a game changer, right? I’m glad you are finding our posts helpful! Congrats on feeling better! xo
The whole food nutrition focus is great. I wanted to put in a plug for Haven and Le. The older I get the more I realize that I have to “lift heavy things.” As an avid runner, bringing more strength training to my wellness routine has been really empowering, and Haven and Le are great guides.
Laura, I love your posts! I’ve been looking for something to get me back on track after finishing Whole30, and this sounds perfect.
Would love to have you Samantha (I’m Cathy, the coach for the program). Let me know when you sign up!!
I’ve seen a few other people who do this program and I have to admit I’m really intrigued, but I work overnight (7p to 7a 3x/week). Any idea how the fasting would work in that situation. There no way I can go a whole shift without eating anything! Also, I like that you can do the workout that works best for you. I do a HIIT program with a trainer that I love and I would definitely want to stick with that. I think I need to look into this a little more! Thanks for sharing your experience!
Hi Elizabeth! Cathy here. We definitely have several ladies who work nights and are successful with the fasting. I will help you come up with a schedule that works for you! I’m going to send you a dm on insta!
I tried googling Haven and Le and I did not find the guides you are refering to. Can you give me more information, please? I would love to start lifting as well.
I want to leave a comment here that FWTFL did not work for me. It is expensive, and the learning curve is pretty big. I have other things going on in my life, and FWTFL requires a pretty extensive dedication (and money!) to the program. My group and trainer were not helpful. I felt shy about asking questions because when I asked them, I got back vague answers like “eat more protein.” It’s not helpful when I have one kid who eats no dairy, one who eats no meat, and one who eats no veggies. I’m trying to provide a balanced diet for them, and counting macronutrients wasn’t helpful. I compared it with Whole 30, and what I liked about Whole 30 more was that the food was more defined. Maybe the books helped. I understand FWTFL wants you to make your own decisions about what to eat based on personal preference and personal nutrition. But some of us need specific details about what to eat when we are learning about macronutrients. There was too much trial and error.
When you’re talking about a “lifestyle,” in my opinion, my lifestyle can’t be that much different than the lifestyle that my kids lead. You say in your article that you’re being a healthy example for your kid, and while I agree with that, I don’t think that the continued practice of fasting and eating macronutrients is sustainable. Specifically: traveling with kids. Or cringing when my husband brings home a pizza. Or when my neighbor brings homemade truffles. I am going to eat all of it.
When I tried FWTFL, I was at the tail end of my fasting when I came home one day ready to eat. And suddenly, the carpet installers were there telling me I had to cover up all the baseboards so they wouldn’t scratch the paint off the baseboards when they were installing the carpet. They couldn’t wait. I had to cover up the baseboards with tape and paper, which was a pretty grueling task that I was unprepared for and also already tired from the day. And I had to go another hour before I could eat. And then I called the carpet company and yelled at them about the carpet installers. And while I was yelling at the lady on the phone, she asked what she could do to help me, and I said nothing, I just need to eat. So I can verify that I was VERY HUNGRY during FWTFL and it is not for everybody.
Have you read Burnout by Emily Nagoski? There is a historical reason why women are viewed as “supposed to be thin.” We’re not really supposed to be thin. We are supposed to have bellies that protrude because that’s how our diaphragms work in order to get air into our lungs. Flat stomachs = less air = literally suffocating ourselves.
Laura, I do follow you on IG and you never(rarely?) post food pics. Am I missing something? I love your fashion photos though. Because of you, I now own Golden Goose sneakers which I am mad about but they are super wonderful. I would rather line my feet with luxury leather than count down the minutes until I can eat again.
I’m not mad. I just want other people to know this program isn’t for everyone. And the articles about how FWTFL didn’t work for them don’t show up.
Hi Tina! I’m Cathy, the coach for the program. Haven and Le are two of the head trainers for the FASTer Way workouts. They are amazing! There is still time to join this round if you’re interested. Our strength workouts are amazing! You can access the link to register in the article!
Tina, I commented below :).
Hi Ame, this is Cathy (Scotti and Laura’s coach for the program). I’m so sorry you had a bad experience. I’m not sure when you did the program last, but there have been many updates, one of those being an optional meal plan and vegan meal plan with family friendly recipes (comes with a grocery list for your convenience). The goal of the program is not to track macros forever. It’s for you to get an idea of how much of each macronutrient you need on a daily basis and to eventually use intuitive eating. I appreciate tracking here and there to really see where I’m at (I think it’s eye opening for many clients in the beginning).
As far as the carpenters and you being hungry, I always tell my clients to HONOR their hunger. If you’re hungry Eat! Furthermore, you really shouldn’t feel hungry on fwtfl. We eat a lot of food and focus on fueling the body properly. It could’ve been that you had your macros set too low. Also, some people do better with shorter fasting windows (Laura did a shorter window).
I’ve never done whole 30, but from what I’ve heard it is way MORE restrictive than fwtfl. In fwtfl you don’t have to start all over if you eat a piece of cheese or have a bite of chocolate cake. That’s what makes it more of a lifestyle. You eat the foods you love. I’ve been eating this way for over 18 months and can attest that is truly sustainable.
As far as vacation, pizza, truffles: we practice progress not perfection. Memories over macros. Of course, you can’t indulge in pizza everyday and expect to feel your best, but I always enjoy myself on vacation and eat chocolate weekly! Laura actually went to Mexico during the program and did not feel deprived. You just start back up when you’re back home!
I would love to offer you a returning client discount if you would like to try the program again. You can use the link in the article to sign up or email me at email@example.com